VMware’s acquisition of Zimbra is a big step towards delivering IT as a service and signals VMware’s intention to deliver the benefits of virtualization and cloud computing all the way from the infrastructure to the platform to the application layer. Steve Herrod, VMware CTO provides good insight into the VMware rationale for the acquisition.
So what implications does this have on security? RSA believes that virtualization provides a clean slate to ‘get security right’. Upwards vertical integration of the VMware stack will extend the benefits of innovative security embedded in the virtualization layer to cloud-ready applications that are optimized for the stack. For example, imagine creation of a new Zimbra e-mail account that in turn triggers the provisioning of virtual machines, security controls, and multitenancy controls in the vSphere and vCloud platforms.
In general, the real promise of the VMware acquisition of Zimbra will be unleashed as VMware systematically integrates its core services that enable availability, security, chargeback and multi-tenancy to the SpringSource and Zimbra assets. These are exciting times at VMware and for those of us lucky enough to witness and shape the new IT.